Edinburgh Festival Review: Pain and I (Audio)

Sarah Hopfinger’s Pain and I is an incredible piece, accessible to all, as it’s both a live dance performance and online auditory piece. Hopfinger’s audio piece, featuring gorgeous string arrangements from Alicia Jane Turner, is at once personal tone poem and mantra. Charting her long struggle with neurological pain and back pain, Hopfinger’s words areContinue reading “Edinburgh Festival Review: Pain and I (Audio)”

Album Review: Superorganism – World Wide Pop

Perfect pop often tightropes precariously between euphoria and melancholy. So it is with Superorganism, the London- based, globally sourced pop act. Orono Noguchi’s sweet youthful vocals can be soulfully sad, joyful or snarky and cynical. It’s all anchored by quirky textures, samples and grooves. Like a Lego kit, the band thrives on building little empiresContinue reading “Album Review: Superorganism – World Wide Pop”

Album Review: Speedy Wunderground Vol 5

The legendary label is nearly a decade young, believe it or not. Dan Carey, Alexis Smith and Pierre Hall’s baby just keeps going from strength to strength, as evinced by their latest compilation. From Lazarus Kane’s opener Narcissus, a kind of hyper- caffeinated Talking Heads meets Hot Chip groove, through to The Lounge Society’s broodyContinue reading “Album Review: Speedy Wunderground Vol 5”

DVD Review: The Sparks Brothers

Edgar Wright’s The Sparks Brothers is more than a traditional rock doc. A visually glorious pop art paean to the shapeshifting nature of pop music, Ron and Russell Mael, aka Sparks, represent longevity, invention and playful erudition. From their LA childhood on the beach, absorbing their artist father’s paintings, and being driven by their motherContinue reading “DVD Review: The Sparks Brothers”

Album Review: Tess Parks- And Those Who Were Seen Dancing

This is a strange one. Tess Parks, the Canadian singer- songwriter who recently collaborated with Anton Newcombe from Brian Jonestown Massacre, is clearly steeped in retro influences, most notably the Paisley Underground and post- PU outfits like Mazzy Star, as well as the original bands who influenced them like The Seeds and West Coast PopContinue reading “Album Review: Tess Parks- And Those Who Were Seen Dancing”

Album Review: Hatchie- Giving The World Away

Harriette Pilbeam is the singer- songwriter behind Hatchie. This new release is effervescent dream pop, confident sounding, featherlight but with a little bittersweetness. ‘Lights On’ and ‘The Key’ have Cocteau Twins in the shimmering, chiming sound, while 80s and 90s jukebox favourites like Depeche Mode, New Order and St Etienne loom large, in the bigContinue reading “Album Review: Hatchie- Giving The World Away”

Dance Film Review: Rambert 2- Block Party

Canadian choreographer Megan Lawson has worked with Adele, Madonna and Katy Perry amongst others. Her new short film created in collaboration with the young dancers from Rambert Dance Company, Rambert 2, is called Block Party. It’s an eye-popping, vibrant and surreal film, with the colourfully attired ensemble rippling as one like a snake and topplingContinue reading “Dance Film Review: Rambert 2- Block Party”

EP Review: Eydis Evensen- Frost

Inspired by the unique landscape of her homeland, Icelandic composer/ musician Eydis Evensen has created effortless beauty here with new EP Frost . Minimalist but effective, her elliptical piano playing spirals around strings, creating an eerie soundtrack to the famous mountains, geysers and hills. Tracks like the swooning Svartnaetti and Dawn Is Near have anContinue reading “EP Review: Eydis Evensen- Frost”

Album Review: Erasers- Constant Connection

There’s definitely a trend at the moment for indie bands to emulate post-punk bands. I can hear traces of The Raincoats, Wire and Fatal Microbes in current popular bands like Dry Cleaning, Yard Act and Life. So it goes with the incredibly minimalist Erasers. The duo from Perth in Australia, comprised of Rebecca Orchard andContinue reading “Album Review: Erasers- Constant Connection”

EP Review: Jackson Hill- Rabbit Feather

What a strange and beguiling debut from the Raleigh- based ambient musician and producer. Rabbit Feather weaves in and out of speakers. Its trippy strangeness is both unsettling and comforting. There’s a lullaby like fragility to Figment and Whatever Helps You Sleep At Night makes you feel encased in some kind of space PID, untilContinue reading “EP Review: Jackson Hill- Rabbit Feather”